96 years ago this month, the 19th amendment was ratified and became law.
In November of that year, more than 8 million women voted in elections for the first time. This major milestone in women’s history allowed these first-time voters to take a formal and legitimate part in the political process that had been previously denied to them.
The 19th amendment wasn’t the final stop on ensuring the enfranchisement of women in the 20th century. Many Native American, Asian, Black and other minority women were still barred from the voting booth well after the 19th amendment became law.
1924 – Indian Citizenship Act grants all Native Americans the right to vote in federal elections
1952 – McCarran-Walter Act grants all people of Asian ancestry the right to become citizens.
1965 – The Voting Rights Act is passed, which protects the rights of minority voters.
This August, as we celebrate 96 years of the 19th amendment, let us also celebrate the many milestones and legal accomplishments that have allowed all women to enter the voting booth and exercise their full rights as American citizens.
Today the museum celebrates the women’s suffrage movement by hosting a parade and rally through Balboa Park. Can’t make it to the parade? Don’t worry you can still celebrate women’s history with us online.
Why is women’s history important?
That is the question I’ve been asking all month along as part of our #WomensHistoryBecause campaign. We’ve had guest bloggers on The Blab write posts answering this question and now it is your turn. Let us know why women’s history is important to you below. Your answer may be posted on the museum’s social media accounts in celebration of Women’s Equality Day, August 26th.